Thursday, 16 September 2010

Digital doldrums

I have taken time out to sort out my computer system and save my files. It is a Pandora's box and takes a long time.

It is a bit like cleaning a house, pretty boring, but
it makes me feel better afterwards, in this case to know that my files are safe. Not to mention the fact that I have found quite a lot of interesting stuff that I had completely forgotten about.

Working with the computer is so fast and intuitive. It can easily run away with you. So not a bad thing to go into slower left brain mode for a while. Maybe that is what my very sluggish laptop is telling me!

PS I have got the laptop back to perfect again, thanks to PC World emptying it out and starting afresh. I am all digi-ied out for now.

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

The poet Rilke

I am reading again "The Hare with Amber Eyes" (mentioned in previous blog July 2nd). The author, Edmund de Waal, writes about his grandmother, a law student in 1920s Vienna. She is also a poet and that is her deepest and lifelong passion. She corresponded with the German poet Rilke during this time and he tells her:

"I find the great contrast between your two occupations positive; the more diverse the life of the mind, the better the chances are that your inspiration will be protected, the inspiration which cannot be predicted, that which is motivated from within".

Humble though my own efforts are, I very well know the importance of protecting one's inner, miraculous and unexplainable self from the humdrum logic of commonsense and rationality

Another time, writing about Vienna, he says:

"Cities often feel things in anticipation, a paleness in the light, an unexpected softness in the
shadows, a gleam in the windows .... in my own experience only Paris and (in a naive way) Moscow absorb the whole nature of the spring into them as if they were a landscape..."

I know this feeling in cities, perhaps it is the result of so much human energy focussed in a restricted space.

I have been busy updating my website for the past and am still working on it, but this page from de Waal's book caught my imagination yesterday (p. 217).